My top 5 songs.... by Elliot Porter
I was recently asked by an online magazine to lay out my top 5 songs and give a little description as to why I thought they were my best work to date. You may disagree, of course, and that is completely fine, but here is what I had to say:
It's the latest single and I think it is one of my best songs to date. I love the atmosphere we have created and I think the lyrics really hit home to people. It paints a picture of another land and I love that. The video is also one of the best we've done so far with animated characters following me around Brighton. I am not the main character, and I like that.
Essentially it is a love song about a life-long partner, who you could never imagine leaving, or indeed how you would even contemplate doing so. It is also a love song for a place. I have always loved being in Brighton, and I'm so glad we could film the video there before lockdown. I hope to be wandering through the beautiful Lanes once more and getting lost in one of the many awesome watering holes!
The video is produced by Ben Sommers/Smoke No Pony
The recording features Alex Reeves from Elbow and is produced by Dave Gerrard.
Lights of Piccadilly
Again, it has a beautiful video, filmed in London in late 2019 by Daniel Lumley. I really like the way this track builds and tells a story. It's as much a love song for a place as it is a person, and it features London heavily.
I was staying and working in London a lot at the time of writing this, spending my time between city pubs and the more rural retreats of Highgate and Hampstead, often writing lyrics by the fire. I was also feeling the strain of working and travelling in London a lot, and although I loved it, this also tells the tale of wanting a quieter life but constantly being drawn back to the bright lights.
I like the instrumentation and when the guitar and piano kicks in near the end, with the arpeggiated notes on the piano twinkling like Christmas lights - it's quite a festive sounding song.
The recording features Alex Reeves, Charlie Morton and Dan Rogers, produced by Dave Gerard.
In terms of songwriting, I think this is my most complete song. The lyrics are poignant and paint the picture of being in a new relationship, having doubts but really hoping it has the 'Legs' to make it.
The middle section is powerful I think and it really transcends the emotion as it builds. I was really pleased with how this came out because it was actually two songs originally, and I had never been able to successfully merge two ideas before - they always sounded contrived. But I truly believe every idea you put down has a purpose, whether to show you the way to go, show you what to do differently, or to fit into the fabric of another song later down the line - probably when you least expect it. It was certainly the case with this one, and I think we captured it very nicely.
Featuring Alex Reeves (Elbow), Dan Rogers (Unthanks) and produced by Dave Gerrard.
This was my breakthrough song as an artist and it got featured on BBC Radio 2 by Bob Harris who had this to say:
'Confident and very, very beautiful' - Bob Harris
Having this song played on BBC Radio 2 was a dream come true for me and opened up exciting collaborations, festival appearances and opportunities for me.
We really thought about the atmosphere with this track and spent 2 days getting it to sound just as we wanted it. The drone sound at the start is actually a reversed guitar - giving a very small nod to the Beatles there! It is a story about mental health, and how we should be kind to people because we never know what is going on behind closed doors.
I feel this message is even more prominent now after the last few years when life has really been taking its toll on people and their mental health. I hope it will go on to become a beacon of hope for people and I will always keep reviving it in my live sets.
Definitely one that I am hugely proud of.
The recording is produced by Dave Gerard.
Keep It To Yourself (With Melody Causton):
Keep It to Yourself Elliot Porter · Song · 2015
This was a duet recorded with folk singer Melody Causton and produced by Dave Gerrard and Tobias Humble.
This song is a real favourite of mine, I think it captures a Glen Hansard/Once vibe. Melody's vocals also add something really special, as do the beautiful strings from Rachel Lanskey. We recorded the video in Cambridge, and I love the light that we were able to capture because Cambridge is truly beautiful in the summer.
There is also an instrumental piano version of this which will be featuring in a short film in 2021 - watch this space!
The recording features Melody Causton, Rachel Lanskey and Tobias Humble.
If You Change Your Mind:
Another personal favourite of mine, and featured on the Cambridge TV Sitcom 'Humble Pie'.
I think this is a great build and a very emotional song. I remember the exact time I scribbled down the last lyrics to this - my car had broken down after an awful day at work, I was super, super hungover after an all-nighter the day before (quite normal for me at this time) and I had just realised nothing was ever going to happen with a girl I had been pursuing, all the emotion came out here in one go and the song was very quick to write. Again, I inserted a middle 8 that facilitated the build, rather than break it up just for the sake of a middle 8 and I think that gives the song a good journey that the listener can follow and relate to.
In Humble Pie, it is used right at the end of a scene where the true love of the main character has kind of slipped away - and I think this suits the song perfectly.
The recording features Jack Daubney, Dave Gerard and Amber Wilson.
I would love to hear your thoughts - what is my best song in your opinion?
You can check out all my music here: www.elliotporter.co.uk